UK Start-up visa

The UK Start-up visa category is for new entrepreneurs seeking to establish a business in the UK for the first time. Applicants must have an innovative, viable and scalable business idea which has been assessed and supported by an approved endorsing body.

We understand that the UK Start-up visa applications can be complex and using the services of an immigration expert are highly recommended. We pride ourselves on being approachable and proactive in understanding and meeting our clients’ needs. You will need to ensure that you meet all of the mandatory requirements before you apply. You will need to complete the relevant forms and collate your evidence for submission.

UK Start-up visa: Eligibility requirements:

To qualify for entry clearance or leave to remain in UK Start-up visa category, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old on the date of decision
  • Have your business or business idea assessed by an approved body which you genuinely intend to undertake, and are capable of undertaking, any work or business activity in the UK stated in your application
  • Provide an endorsement letter from an endorsing body confirming viability of your business
  • Your endorsement letter was issued not more than 3 months before the date of your Start-up visa application
  • Not fail under the general grounds for refusal
  • Meet the requirements for English language
  • Meet the requirements for maintenance
  • Not fail any reasonably required credibility assessment

Endorsement letter for UK Start-up visa category:

The endorsement letter from an approved endorsing body must provide all of the following information:

  • The name of endorsing body
  • The endorsement reference number
  • The date of issue (which must be no earlier than 3 months before the date of application)
  • The applicant’s name, date of birth, nationality and passport number
  • Confirmation that the applicant has not previously established a business in the UK
  • A short description of the applicant’s business venture and the main products or services it will provide to its customers
  • The applicant’s business venture is innovative, viable and scalable in accordance with the relevant immigration rules
  • The endorsing body is reasonably satisfied that the applicant will spend the majority of their working time in the UK on developing business ventures
  • The name and contact details (telephone number, email and workplace address) of an individual at the endorsing body who will verify the contents of the letter to the Home Office if requested

Switching into UK Start-up visa category:

Switching into the Start-up category is only allowed if you have, or have last been granted, leave as a: Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) migrant (who has not yet been granted 2 years’ leave in the category), Tier 2 migrant, Tier 4 (General) student, a visitor who has been undertaking permitted activities as a prospective entrepreneur.

Restrictions on Tier 4 (General) Students switching into Start-up visa category in the UK:

If your last grant of leave was as a Tier 4 (General) Student, you must are only able to switch into the Start-up route if you have been sponsored by:

  • Higher education provider with a track record of compliance (as defined in the Immigration Rules, Introduction, para 6)
  • An overseas institution on a short-term study abroad programme in the UK
  • An Embedded College offering Pathway Courses, or
  • An independent school

Can you work under UK Start-up visa:

>You are permitted to work (other than as a professional sportsperson or doctor or dentist in training) in both an employed or self-employed capacity.  However, despite having a right to take any employment, you could find yourself in difficulty if you do substantial supplementary employed work. Your endorsing body must be satisfied that you will spend the majority of working time in the UK on developing business ventures.

Can you bring family members under the UK Start-up visa:

As UK Start-up visa holder, you have the right to bring your dependents to the UK. A dependant can be your spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner, child under 18.

How long UK Start-up visa is valid for:

The Start-up category only leads to a grant of leave for two years, so anyone wishing to stay in the UK for a longer period, will need to think about appropriate categories to switch into such as Innovator visa.

English language requirement for UK Start-up visa:

You must have at least a B2 level of English language ability, as defined in the Council of Europe’s common European framework for language and learn.

Maintenance requirement for UK Start-up visa:

You must show that you have at least £945 of available funds, plus £630 funds for each dependant.

Can you apply for extension or settlement (indefinite leave to remain) in the Start-up visa category:

It is not possible to extend UK Start-up visa and it does not allow settlement. However, on completion of 2 years you may be able to apply for further leave to remain in the Innovator category.  The Innovator category can lead to settlement after a further 3 years.

What happens if your UK Start-up visa application is refused:

Should you fail to meet the requirements, it is likely that any future applications for temporary migration (such as a visit visa) will be subjected to greater scrutiny.

At Aaryan Solicitors, team of our immigration law specialists’ can advise you on the merits of making a fresh application and/or challenging the decision by way of process called Administrative Review. If the application was submitted from outside the UK (entry clearance), then you will have 28 days but in all other cases only 14 days from the date of service of the decision to lodge your Administrative Review.

Why Choose Aaryan Solicitors?

Expert Immigration team Aaryan Solicitors has a team of expert UK immigration and family visa solicitors who can provide you legal advice and assistance with your Start-up visa application. Headed by partner Vikramjit Singh, an acknowledged immigration law specialist and champion of those whose status here is challenged., we have a track record of successfully pushing through applications efficiently and cost-effectively. Contact us for case assessment, eligibility requirements and supporting documents.

Competitive Prices: We offer a competitive price service without compromising on our service. Our reputation outshines other, larger immigration law ​firms in London and across the country.

Priority and super priority visa service: : Our Immigration Services include specialist 24-hour visa service with UKVI, Home Office, UK Passport Office or UKVCAS. We can prepare and submit your application to the UKVCAS service point by accompanying you and get a decision within 24 hours on your application by guiding you at each step from enrolment of your biometrics to liaising with the Home Office Immigration Caseworker in achieving the desired result in one day. We can arrange an appointment for earliest available date which will be within 6 weeks from the time you instruct us. We also provide assistance with the Home Office priority and super priority service to obtain a decision on your application in matter of few days for the applications submitted from outside the United Kingdom.

Flexible payment options: We understand that immigration complications often arise without notice which could become difficult in present economic climate therefore we provide flexible payment options. You may pay the agreed fees in instalments each month benefiting your needs, which will be agreed in advance.

Excellent Success Rate: : Every application we prepare is tailor-made and thoroughly researched. As a result, our success rate is high. We pride in our highest standard of service as a result of which most of our clients return to us for their other legal matters.

Out of office hour unique service: We provide clients focused service keeping in consideration busy working lifestyle therefore out of office telephone and/or in person appointments are available, subject to prior bookings, from 6.00 pm to 8.30 pm weekdays, and on weekends and bank holidays.

To apply for a Start-up visa UK, get in touch with Aaryan Solicitors for professional, no-obligation advice.


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FAX: 020 7183 5101

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